Free Community Open House – December 3rd from 2 – 4 p.m.

Nov 21, 2022

AKRON – The Summit County Historical Society’s free annual Community Open House is back for 2022! On December 3rd from 2-4 p.m., guests may visit the John Brown House and Perkins Stone Mansion plus meet Santa Claus.

Holidays on the Hill: Celebrating Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa features traditions from around the world that are celebrated in Akron and Summit County. In the Perkins Stone Mansion, the home of Akron and Summit County’s founding family, see a Victorian Christmas, learn how to play the dreidel game for Hanukkah, try out the African xylophone as you learn about the harvest festival of Kwanzaa, and see if you recognize ornaments, toys or clothing surrounding the Society’s centennial tree.

Attendees are asked to park at the John House as it has a new paved parking lot from the completion of Phase III “Accessible to All,” funded in part by an Ohio biennium grant, local foundations and the generosity of Society board directors, volunteers, members and community residents. Look for an “elf” to share a postcard map sharing the buildings open to the public, where you can find Santa, and the location of the cookie “train” station.

Inside the John Brown House is a restored Collins sleigh originally made in Akron prior to the 20th century and skillfully restored by retired Michigan model maker Belinda Palmiter. Thank you to Society board director Deb Loughborough for loaning her collection of African American Santas and Christmas decorations, as well as the City of Akron for loaning Polsky and O'Neil's window displays courtesy through the assistance of Jeanne Tassiello-Jordan.

Tours of the Society’s historic structures are open for the holidays starting on November 30th and running through December 30th. The hours are Wednesday, Thursday, Friday & Saturday from 1 – 4 p.m. with the last tour at 3:30 p.m. and a special tour by appointment at 11 a.m. on Saturdays. The cost is $10 per person, $8 for seniors, $5 for Society members and veterans, $2 for students. The Society will have amended hours for its Open House on December 3 and it is closed on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

Remember to stop by the Society’s Wood Shop Emporium for your holiday gift buying. You’ll find items made of wood from the property, local author’s books and others about Ohio plus unique gifts featuring the Society’s mascot, Simon Purrkins, the sheep on Mutton Hill and the dogs that work them.